THE MESIAN-MESSAGE NO. 88. MARCH, 2009.
THE LADY ANON. SERIES
THE SELVARAJ DANIEL 3RD EDITION
HAPPY NIU YEAR
HAPPY NIU YEAR. WHAT, SUY SANG? Aren't you mistaken. Isn't Chinese New Year gone? And your spelling is wrong?
Yes, Chinese New Year is gone, but Chinese Niu Year is on. For the niu year of the Chinese is the year of the
ox, the cow, the buffalo, the bull or the bullock. And "niu" means all these animals collectively known as
People have called the "niu" year the year of the Ox only. Few refer it as the year of the bull, but never have
they say the year of the buffalo and never ever anyone says the year of the cow. So ungrateful, for it is the
cow that benefits mankind most! No wonder there is a Malay saying which goes like this: "lembu punya susu,
sapi dapat nama." The cow produces milk, but the bull gets the name.
Now, not even the bull gets the name except occasionally you hear people abuse it by shouting "bull shit". The
Ox gets the title and fame!! How often do we say "ox" in ordinary parlance?
The cow gets none but only be sneered at as the producer of cow dung!
Still want to know more? Let me deliberate and elaborate for all.
"Niu" is ox or cow, bull or bullock in Pudong language, the national pronunciation for the Chinese language
throughout China which is erroneously referred to as Mandarin. The Chinese are strange; they have a standard
written script, but there are hundreds of ways of pronunciation! Ox or cow, or bullock or buffalo in Cantonese
is "ngau", in Hokkien is "ngoo", in hakka is "ngiew" and so forth with other dialects.
Another strange thing about the Chinese written script is that the Japanese can understand it, the Korean can
read it and probably some Vietnamese, Cambodians, Myanmars, and Laotians can decipher it. Aren't these other
people scions of the Chinese? I ain't no Oriental scholar. That is all that I can guess so far! If I have
committed an error, please right me and put me back to par.
There are 384 days in the Niu Year.
Why? Arenft there 365 days in a year? Nope, 365 days a year is in the Georgian Calendar. The Chinese has a
Lunar calendar. Excuse me not only the Chinese follow that Lunar Calendar, but many ethnic groups in Asia also
has the same lunar calendar. In the Chinese Lunar Calendar, the months are specified as big or small. A big
month has 30 days and a small month has 29 days.
The following are the months in the Niu Year according to if they are big or small:
- 1st month
- 2nd month
- 5th month
- 7th month
- 9th month
- 11th month
- 12th month
5th Leap Month)
Hey, there are 13 months in the Niu Year! Yes, because it would be a leap year with a leap month, the May
(7 X 30 = 210) + (6 X 29 = 174) = 384 days
So there are 384 days in the Niu Year
What a long Niu Year!
December 31 in the Georgian Calendar is only the 16th day of the eleventh month of the Chinese Lunar Calendar.
So the next CNY would fall in the middle of February 2010. What animal will represent the next Lunar Year?
Want to know all those zodiac creatures, and little stories on them lucky animals? Tell me so and I will write
about them for all to know.
STORY NO. 3 :
HE WAS SOMEBODY
One morning I met with Zainal Lisut at the Syed Bistro in Kelana Jaya. We had breakfast of chappati and
As his usual self, Zainal had a lot to tell. After leaving school he bunked off to KL. He mixed up with men of
politics of course the established segment, the former Alliance. That coalition was in power and so Zainal too
enjoyed some of the oozing wealth and privileges of the establishment.
He was sort of man of liaison man running here and there to liaise with the top and the bottom. Thus he was a
sort of middleman - a runner. From the top he received orders and demands. He handed down the orders and
of the bosses.
Then at the bottom, there were complaints and things to be done or explained. That he also handled to the
satisfaction of the locals. Thus he mingled with busy MPs and more busy and favour seeking assemblymen -
politicians on the ascent.
Yet Zainal did not want to be too prominent. So he kept a low profile. For doing the donkey's jobs, he was
generously rewarded with business positions. So he survived and made quite a lucrative living! You know in all
political systems there are distributed what we call "jobs for the boys" like they say in America!
From his dealings with people he had built up quite a big clientele that had spilled over to members of his
family. Zainal's wife is a creative lady. She designs beautiful hampers for companies, personalities, and
dignitaries. Want to get hampers individually created, anybody?
Most of us knew Zainal as an avid soccer player. Now he mixes around in clubs and tee balls with all sorts of
clubs. Zainal keeps a good figure, lanky, no bulging tummy and a well-balanced body. For he is an active man:
jogging, walking and mixing with all sorts of friends.
Zainal is in retirement now, but he is quite an established fellow. Cheerio, Zainal.
THAT STORY JOLTED
Dear Suy Sang,
As usual as soon as I see the mail came in, I will tear open the Mesian before I could have my tea after work.
The Mesian No. 87, which carried Professor Voon Phin Keong's letter took me back to 1962. I happened to be one
of his students in Form four A in 1962. I think he was there only for one term and within that short period he
taught us map drawing of Bentong town, contour study which helped us to understand the steepness of
Mr Surendra Nath was our class teacher and taught us literature.
Prof. Voon has mentioned few names, one of them my good friend Chin Sak Min when he became the King Scout
MES students were very proud of him. Sad to learn he passed away. The last time I met him was in Cameron
Highlands where he worked for a transport company.
G P Kumarasamy, Rawang
1. Mr. Surendra Nath had kissed the dust. He is known as the late Surendranath now.
2. Hey, map drawing and contour work is in the Form Six syllabus slot! Good, for in MES teachers were free
to teach what they knew! Where in the world did we have typewriting, book-keeping, shorthand etc in our
syllabus! Yet we were taught these things that we cherish so much now!!
REELING BACK HALF A CENTURY:
1959 - MARCH
"I don't like to cane students, but sometimes it has to be done"! My exclamation.
And it was gone!! See how he learnt about children. Mr. Miles came in with love for students even up to the
point of disarming the rattan from the hand of his predecessor. Now he had to bring back that weapon! On
did he administered the corporal punishment? On whose butt fell the rattan? For what misdemeanour the
had done? You have to read his diary to get the crunch of the incident!
Oh yes talking of punishment, Mr. Miles explained in class the difference between "corporal" and "capital"
punishment. A student understood not the difference. He nearly got the right punishment when our mentor
him the rattan! So the rattan had been reinstated in its rightful place in the principal's office. The ultimate
weapon that made students frightened!
A delinquent student took some money to serve as fare home before running from the hostel. He was considered
to not have anything to do with the hostel and school. You can read: "Wefre finished with bothering with him."
Now names that appeared in his March 1959 diary: Hong Chai, Kanagaraj, Zubir, Munzir, and Yit Seong. The big
guy, Hong Chai soon died. The rest are still kicking around.
Then there was a string of princes mentioned: Tengku Nizan, Tengku Ahmad, Tengku Ismail, Tengku Ibrahim,
Tengku Rahim, Tengku Jamil and Tengku Abdullah.
There were some more commoners: Ah Ming, Hock Sek, Victor Dass, and Bakar. Wong Sai Kow, Ragwans Kaur,
Benjamin, Syed Adanan, Syed Abdullah, Bahari, Kamal, Brian, Shamsuddin Salleh, Yeng Kee, Zahid, and Heng
THIS IS MEIJI
This is a little story about a Mesian called Mohd. Razlan.
One day out of the blue he called me from Kemaman.
While having a small talk at the little round marble table, we heard the canines yapping at some in-coming
visitor. We walked outside via the back of the house. There, standing near a motorcycle stood a casually
dressed but head-shaven lady. "This is Meiji," our mentor introduced her. She is the Buddhist nun whose
vocation plus hobby is to rope in stray canines and keep and feed them in an outpost somewhere near Bilut
Meiji had come to treat Hercules, a huge sort of Alsatian that had been bitten. Days ago, Hercules was involved
in a fight with some stray canines. In the battle, he was bitten. Now, the wounds had gone septic and maggots
ridden. Our mentor coaxed Hercules into a cage. Then the three of us carried Hercules to the front porch. Meiji
sprayed a blue stuff probably a poison or lotion or medicine onto the wounds. She said that would help in the
I WAS BITTEN
From that little bit of moving around I was bitten. By the canines? No, they are the friendly lot to me. One
named Zahara, was particularly friendly as she used to jump on me whenever I come around.
But the bite was expedited by a blood drinker. The culprit was a wriggly critter; a voracious blood sucker; a
leech! That's it!! It had climbed my shin and bitten me causing a sort of itching pain. I pulled it off my shin
and crushed it with my footwear.
THE CRITTERS GO TO TOWN
On seeing that our mentor said, the other day he had brought two of those creatures into town. "One I noticed
it on my shirt while I was at the bank. I just flicked it off. The other fed to its full content on my leg
until I noticed the blood that oozed out to wet my pants." To visitors may I say:
Beware, when you are out there!
CALAMITIES with A PURPOSE
One Sunday at 2.45 pm I left the Bukit Chamang house for the roadside bus stop to catch the bus back to KL.
After 20 minutes of waiting a bus came. But that bus only plied a local route. It would only dump me at the
main bus station in town. Just behind, another bus that was supposed to be the KL-bound bus came trundling
past. Alas! I should have boarded the second bus for it overshot us!!
But strange enough!! When I reached the station, no bus was in sight. The "supposed to be the KL-bound bus" had
mysteriously disappeared. And there was no time scheduled for a bus to leave the station for Kuala Lumpur then.
I waited at the bus station until 3.40 pm, yet the 3.30 pm scheduled bus had not pulled into the station. I
made up my mind to take the 4.00 pm South Union express bus instead and bought the ticket. As soon as I picked
up the ticket, I turned and saw the Central Pahang bus thundered into the station. What luck! I was
dumb-struck!! Then that recently came in bus pulled out of the station heading for Kuala Lumpur.
I was stuck for half an hour. So I waited. But the South Union bus that I was supposed to catch came into the
station late! Oh my gosh! I was actually delayed for more than half an hour. Then another Central Pahang bus
came in, and left in the direction of KL. Damn!
The South Union bus then pulled into the station. Immediately, it left for it was behind time for fifteen
minutes. I felt good as that was an express bus and it would not stop half way.
THE BUS STALLS
However, that feeling of reaching KL soon did not last. At the Lentang Picnic Spot about 19km from Bentong,
the South Union bus from the company that had a reputation of having well-maintained and seldom break down
buses, stalled and the driver pulled it over to the roadside. It had broken down; and that was also my first
time to travel in a South Union bus plying KL via Bentong through Raub, now!
ON BUS NUMBER 3
It looked like all the calamities that struck me on that day's short journey from Bentong to KL, had some
purpose: to listen to some interesting stories!! When I reached Kuala Lumpur I checked my watch. The delay was
less than half an hour and no more! But there in the capital city, I saw much, much more!!
FOREIGN INVASION IN THE CITY
I treaded the streets of Kuala Lumpur going about the hub of the city. After consuming a meal of animal soup
entrails I looked around. There I saw the crowd, the whole street of them foreigners - foreign labour mostly
from the sub-continent. They must be Bangladeshis, Nepalese, Pakistanis, etc, etc., for their bodies were
ebony! They spoke languages most unfamiliar to me. I wonder if local Indians know them foreign tongues!
I shivered to think what if they turn on me, grab me and rob or manhandle me! So in haste I left the place.
There is nothing safer than home!
WHAT A B I R T H D A Y BASH
February 15, 2009 - 10.30 am, I left for Mr. Miles's house. A slow moving bulldozer helped me to cross the road
to enter the uphill estate driveway. As soon as I had parked my car, Mahalingam drove in. As we sat waiting for
others to arrive we talked on all and sundry. Garry, Mary and family came with Mr. Thung an elderly man,
walking-stick in hand. Such a faithful friend! From our conversation I came to know that he and our mentor was
of the same age. What a difference he finds difficulties in walking while Mr. Miles was briskly walking around
entertaining! With them also came Mrs. Thum, Choo Oi Mei and another pretty lady. Then came Ramasamy and
Kumarasamy followed by Lee Yew Kong, Wong Mun Seong and his pretty daughter, Munzir Abbas and his spouse,
Chinniah and Selvaraj Daniel. From Temerloh came Foo Yook Yoon, Foo Yu Pong and his family.
Pots and pans, boxes and cans were many, and luck was aplenty. Thus, there materialized the potluck party
instantly. We had plenty to eat. Thank you. Your presence and presents made Mr. Miles's Birthday Bash a big
success. Hurray! Youfve made his day!!
HERE IS WHAT MR. MILES SAYS
"A BIG THANK YOU TO ALL OF YOU FOR YOUR PRESENCE & PRESENTS,"
He really stressed "big" meaning so huge so much so that there ain't no space here to print it for you to view.
Hahaha. It's banter! Jest to stoke for laughter!!
Fiiiiii-few..... Alice Wong Moo Chun, a beauty queen, cat-walked in for a visit. She offered herself to any
suitable and right-aged guy to be her Mr. Right. All the guys including Ted Miles were floored, totally
disqualified. Why? Age-wise, not right!
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO THE FOLLOWING IN MARCH
||TEH BOON TAN
||LOH KOK KEONG
||JOHAR B. ZABIDIN
||NG SHUI CHUAN
||LOH FOOK CHENG
||HJ. TENGKU PUJI
||LIEW CHOW YIN
||ABU HANIPAH MOHD
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(Note: Syed Adanan has just expired in early 2009)
TWO MORE DEPARTURES
One day in early February, Mr. Miles told me of two exits from our fraternity.
First he said, the late Syed Adanan of Lanchang had returned to his creator. Al-Fatehah. Then he related how
Lee Kim Thye had lost her beloved hubby Tony. May his soul rest in peace in the hereafter. To the family of
each of these two departees, we are so sorry to hear the bad news. We wish to express our heart-felt and
deepest condolences to their surviving spouses and progenies.
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